We want to acknowledge our key contributing members who have provided research and strategic leadership for various aspects of inVIVO Planetary Health and/or academic and logistic support for our meetings. We welcome contributions from all members. Please contact us if you wish to become a member or make a specific contribution. (This is NOT alphabetical! Just a nice random jumble of our stars - so you can look through the growing crowd for familiar faces!)
Prof Anita Kozyrskyj, University of Alberta
Chair, LactoActive Group
Local Organiser (2018) Alberta, Canada
Senior Fellow, inVIVO
Anita Kozyrskyj is Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Alberta, Canada. Trained as an epidemiologist after being a NICU pharmacist, she is PI of the SyMBIOTA project on environmental shaping of the infant gut microbiome, and development of childhood overweight and atopic disease in the CHILD cohort study. She also leads the LactoActive group of inFLAME and is a ECR mentor.
Prof Cecilie Svanes, University of Bergen
Senior Fellow (Respiratory Medicine and Cohort Studies), inVIVO
Cecilie Svanes, MD PhD, is a professor at the Centre for International Health at the University of Bergen. She has conceived and now leads the ECRHS/ RHINE based multi-centre generation study RHINESSA. Cecilie has been a member of the Steering Committee of the European Community Respiratory Health Study since 1997, and in the ECRHS leads the field of “Early life origins of chronic lung disease”, a field she also leads in the daughter study RHINE. Svanes is also a specialist in pulmonary and in internal medicine, and work as a consultant in occupational respiratory diseases at the Dept Occupational Medicine, Haukeland University Hospital. She is building the only Norwegian facility for occupational specific inhalation challenges at this department.
Prof Carlos A. Monteiro, University of Sao Paulo Senior Fellow (Food Systeme), inVIVO. Carlos Monteiro is a full professor at the Department of Nutrition at University of Sao Paulo. He is also the Head of the USP Center for Epidemiological Studies in Health and Nutrition. His research line focuses on the relationship between food systems, diet quality and non-communicable diseases. With his group at USP, he developed the NOVA food processing classification system and created the concept of food ultra-processing.
Dr Jeff Craig, Murdoch Children's Research Institute. Communications and Social Media,
Senior Fellow (Epigenetics), inVIVO. Dr Jeff Craig works in the Environmental and Genetic Epidemiology Research Group at the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute and is an Honorary Associate Professor within the Department of Paediatrics, University of Melbourne. He leads a team of researchers in the Early Life Epigenetics team. He has established a number of longitudinal cohorts including the Peri/postnatal Epigenetic Twins cohort. He aims to apply this work to develop epigenetic biomarkers reflecting past environment and predicting future disease risk.
Prof Christina West, University of Umeå
Chair, Microbiome/Senior Fellow (allergy, microbiome, clinical trials) inVIVO
Tina West is a Paediatrician and clinical researcher in the Department of Clinical Sciences, Pediatrics at Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden. She has a specific interest in the role of the Gut Microbiota and the risk of Role in Allergic Disease and leads several clinical trials on this area. She has led the inFLAME Microbiome Working Group since the network began in 2012, including a series of collaborative projects and position statements.
Prof. Maria Jenmalm, Linköping University
Senior Fellow (Microbiome and Experimental Allergology), inVIVO
Maria Jenmalm is Professor of Experimental Allergology in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Linköping University. Her main interests are in childhood immune maturation and allergy development, including epigenetic regulation by maternal immunity and microbial exposure during pregnancy. She has been a major contributor to several collaborative inFLAME projects, including position papers and experimental studies.
Prof Catherine Thornton, Swansea University. Chair, Metabolism Senior Fellow (Immunobiology and Metabolism), inVIVO. Cathy Thornton is Professor of Human Immunology and Deputy Head of Swansea University Medical School. She is Designated Individual for the Medical School’s HTA Human Tissue Research Licence. Cathy’s core research interest is the antenatal determinants of immune health in childhood. This encompasses work on the immune response in pregnancy, especially of the placenta, and post-natal development of immune function in early life with a special interest in the impact of maternal obesity.
Prof Carel Thijs, Maastricht University
Local Organiser (2016), Maastricht Netherlands. Senior Fellow (Cohort Studies), inVIVO. Carel Thijs was trained as a medical doctor, epidemiologist and physician in Public Health. His main research interest is lifecourse epidemiology in the domains of allergy, infections and overweight. He inititiated the KOALA-study and coordinates its many projects and supervises the PhD-fellows and collaborating researchers
Prof. Michael Levin, University of Cape Town Local Organiser (2014), Cape Town South Africa. Senior Research Fellow (Cohort Studies), inVIVO
Mike Levin is head of the Division of Asthma and Allergy in the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Cape Town.
He also leads the South African Food Sensitisation and Food Allergy (SAFFA) study, which assesses an unselected cohort of children (age 12-36 months) in urban Cape Town and a rural cohort of 400 black African (Xhosa) children in the Eastern Cape, to determine the prevalence of sensitisation and true IgE-mediated food allergy.
Prof Desiree Silva, University of Western Australia Senior Fellow (Paediatrics and mental health), inVIVO Desiree is Head of Paediatrics Joondalup Health Campus. She has over 20 years experience in managing children diagnosed with ADHD, autism, anxiety and developmental disorders, and has a special interest in understanding early brain development. She completed a PhD on early environmental risk factors and education and justice outcomes for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal children and youth diagnosed with ADHD.. Desiree is the project co-director for the ORIGINS study, a new interventional birth cohort integrated into clinical services and the local community. She is a strong advocate for a good work life balance enjoying nature, extreme sports and any activity with friends.
Prof. Felice Jacka, Deakin University, University of Melbourne.
Chair, Mental Health, Senior Fellow (Mental Health and Nutrition) inVIVO.
Felice Jacka is the Director of the Food and Mood Centre within the Deakin University School of Medicine in Geelong. She is also an honorary Principal Research Fellow with the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Melbourne, The Centre for Adolescent Health at the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, and at the Black Dog in NSW. She has has pioneered a highly innovative program of research that examines how individuals’ diets interact with the risk for mental health problems. This research is being carried out with the ultimate goal of developing an evidence-based public health message for the primary prevention of the common mental disorders.
Nelly Amenyogbe, University of British Columbia Early Career Fellow (Gut Microbes and Systemic Immunity), inVIVO
Nelly Amenyogbe is pursuing her PhD under the mentorship of Dr. William Mohn in the, Department of Experimental Medicine at the University of British Columbia. Her thesis work is focused on identifying interactions between early life systemic immunity and gut microbiomes, and how these interactions are shaped across geographically distinct environments. Her interests lie in understanding how population-specific dysbioses shape responses to microbial threats in newborns and infants, ultimately applying vaccination and probiotic strategies to optimize the host response to early-life infection.
Dr Donna Geddes, University of Western Australia Senior Fellow (Breast milk Studies), inVIVO Donna is the director of the Human Lactation Research Group. Donna originates from a medical imaging background with an emphasis in ultrasound imaging. She has integrated this modality into many of the group’s studies providing a ‘window’ to different physiological processes during lactation. She has a broad range of research interests in the physiology of lactation extending from basic to applied research. In particular she utilizes her ultrasound imaging skills to assess the lactating breast (anatomy, milk ejection and blood flow) as well as the infant (suck-swallow-breathe, gastric emptying and body composition).
Prof Christine Cole-Johnson, Henry Ford Health System
Senior Fellow (Epidemiology and Cohort Studies), inVIVO Chris Cole Johnson the Chair of Public Health Sciences, Henry Ford Health System and is Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Wayne State University. She is leader of the Trans-American Consortium for the Health Care System Research Network - part of the NIH Precision Medicine Initiative All of Us Research Program, which hopes to collect and analyze the personal health and lifestyle information, and biological samples, one million plus people. Chris is working on the All of Us committees dedicated to starting up the enrollment of children into the research project. She is also the Co-Chair of the NIH’s ECHO program’s Airways Outcomes Committee and working with 3 ECHO cohorts based at Henry Ford. Chris is an epidemiologist with a strong research focus on health during infancy and the epidemiology and etiology of allergic disorders, with the goal of the primary prevention of allergy and asthma. Her research team is focused on prenatal and early infancy characteristics, especially related to the gut microbiota, and immune development, inflammation and pediatric health.
Frank Forencich, Author, Advocate and Educator in Functional Movement, inVIVO. Frank Frank Forencich is a writer, speaker, and an internationally recognized expert on health and human adaptability. He holds a BA from Stanford University in human biology and neuroscience and has over 30 years teaching experience in martial art, functional movement and health promotion. His work underscores the importance of exploring new perspectives on human physicality in both mental and physical. He holds black belt rankings in both karate and aikido and has consulted to major corporations, human resource groups and fitness professionals. Frank has traveled to Africa on several occasions to study the ancestral environment and is the author of several books on health and the human predicament including Exuberant Animal, Beautiful Practice, and The Art is Long: Big Health and the New Warrior Activist.
Dr Shail Mehta, Fiona Stanley Hospital Senior Fellow (Neonatalogy), inVIVO. is a consultant neonatologist at Fiona Stanley Hospital and fellow of The Royal Australasian College of Physicians. He also has honorary affiliations with Telethon Kids Institute of Children’s Research and University of Notre Dame, Australia. His research interests include probiotics use in maternal and child health, early environment modifications, group B streptococcal infections, effect of maternal metabolic conditions like gestational diabetes and obesity on long term outcomes. He is leading a number of clinical studies and birth cohorts including PIP (probiotics in pregnancy) study, RESTORE (probiotics in neonates) study and OPTIMUM (optimising weights for mum and bubs) study. He has particular interest in gut microbiome and its associations with development and epidemiology of non-communicable diseases.
Dr Emily Lindsay, University of Pittsburgh
Senior Fellow (Mindfulness and Wellbeing), inVIVO. Emily Lindsay is a postdoctoral fellow at University of Pittsburgh. Her research tests psychological and biological pathways that explain how mindfulness and acceptance-based practices influence stress, well-being, and physical health.
Dr Tanja Sobko, The University of Hong Kong. (PhD, 2006, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden) Senior Fellow (Lifestyle Intervention), inVIVO. Tanja is Assistant Professor at the School of Biological Sciences, The University of Hong Kong. She has multidisciplinary expertise in pharmacology, nutrition, healthy lifestyle interventions and more recently, sports nutrition. Tanja’s work encompasses not only research and teaching but also the dissemination of findings to the wider community and she has recently received a substantial funding from HK Government to roll out the ‘Play & Grow’ program in HK. Her research focuses on lifestyle adjustments that families with pre-schoolers can make which will directly improve the health the children. By increasing the contact time that families have with nature, the programme has been developed to assess and potentially identify the causal relationship between the outdoor environment and health.
Prof Kathy McCoy, University of Calgary Senior Fellow (Mucosal Immunology), inVIVO. Prof Kathy McCoy is a professor in the Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary and Director of the International Microbiome Centre. Kathy is a mucosal immunologist and microbiome researcher interested in the dynamic interplay between the gut microbiota and the innate and adaptive immune systems. Using germ-free and gnotobiotic animal models together with human translational studies her research aims to understand how exposure to intestinal microbes early in life educates and regulates the developing immune system and how this impacts on susceptibility to immune-mediated diseases, such as allergy and autoimmunity, later in life.
Prof Annika Scheynius, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm
Senior Fellow (Immunomodulation and Allergic Disease), inVIVO.
Annika Scheynius is a Professor senior in Clinical Allergy Research at the Department of Clinical Science and Education,
Karolinska Institutet, and Sachs' Children and Youth Hospital, Södersjukhuset. Her interests include allergic diseases and elucidating mechanisms that determine whether or not an exposed individual will become sensitised to allergens with a focus on host-microbe and gene-environment interactions. Her research focusses on how immune regulatory mechanisms can be used for prevention and treatment.
Dr Debbie Palmer, University of Western Australia, Senior Fellow (Allergy and Nutrition), inVIVO. Dr Debbie Palmer (BSc, BND, PhD) is head of the Childhood Allergy and Immunology Research Team at the University of Western Australia. She is one of a few dietitians worldwide undertaking research in the area of nutritional strategies for allergy prevention. After ten years of clinical paediatric dietetic experience and specialising in the area of food allergy, Debbie commenced her research career. Her current research activities include conducting randomised controlled trials focusing on nutritional interventions for the prevention of allergic disease.
Prof Rose Kamenwa, Aga Khan University, Kenya.Senior Fellow (Gastroenterology and Nutrition), inVIVO. Rose Kamenwa is Assistant Professor, Full Time Faculty and Paediatric Gastroenterologist, in the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at Aga Khan. Her research interests are in Food Allergy and Gastrointestinal Diseases. She has a particular interest in describing patterns of food allergens in children and Vitamin D status in exclusively breastfeeding infants in Kenya.
Prof David Fleischer, University of Colorado
Senior Fellow (Allergy and Immune Tolerance), inVIVO. David Fleischer is associate Professor in pediatrics and allergy at the Children's Hospital Colorado. His primary clinical interest is in food allergy. His research focuses on food allergy, in particular peanut and tree nut allergies. He is interested in why certain patients with food allergies outgrow them more readily and sooner than others. He has an interest in novel treatments for food allergy, including oral and sublingual immunotherapies.
Dr Jon Genuneit, Ulm University, Germany
Senior Fellow (Epidemiology), inVIVO
Jon Genuneit is Deputy Director of the Institute of Epidemiology and Medical Biometry. His research is focused on chronic disease in childhood, among others on phenotyping and the environmental and genetic determinants of asthma and allergies. He has further focus on psychosocial strains and sleep in the family.
Dessi Loukov,McMaster University
Early Career Fellow (Inflammation and Aging), inVIVO. Dessi is completing the final year of her doctoral studies in the lab of Dr. Dawn Bowdish at McMaster University. Her research is centred on the mechanisms by which chronic, age-associated inflammation alters myeloid cell development and function and how this influences immune responses during infection. She studies monocytes and macrophages in aging mouse models and bacterial infections (particularly S. pneumoniae) and has worked with many human cohorts. Her research interests include myeloid biology and the role of metabolism in the regulation of immunity.
Dr. Hein M. Tun, University of Alberta Early Career Fellow (Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics), inVIVO Hein Tun is a trained public health veterinarian, and currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Alberta. Hein was awarded two prestigious postdoctoral fellowships from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and Alberta Innovates (AI). His current research focuses on early-life determinants of infant gut microbiome, and development of allergies and obesity in children. Hein will be leading a research group in the School of Public Health at the University of Hong Kong from May 2018.
Brendan Daisley University of Western Ontario. Early Career Fellow (Microbiology and Immunology), inVIVO
Brendan Daisley is an MSc student in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at The University of Western Ontario. He is a member of Dr. Gregor Reid’s lab and is deeply interested the biological implications associated with unavoidable exposure to environmental pollutants. Specifically, his research aims to elucidate how the endogenous microbiota (community of microorganisms residing on/in a multicellular organism) and exogenously-supplied beneficial microbes (ie. fermented foods, probiotics, etc.) can affect host toxicity towards xenobiotics in humans and wildlife.
Dr Anthony Bosco, Telethon Kids Institute Senior Fellow (Personalised Medicine, computational systems biology), inVIVO. Anthony Bosco is the Simon Lee Fellow, Head of Personalised Medicine and Systems Immunology at the Telethon Kids Institute in Perth, Western Australia. His lab employs network graph theory and computational systems biology to work backwards (reverse engineering) from genomic profiles of immune responses to reconstruct the wiring diagram of the underlying gene networks.
Prof Carolyn Slupsky, University of California, Davis Senior Fellow (Food, the Microbiome and Health), inVIVO. Carolyn Slupsky is a Professor with a joint appointment in the Department of Nutrition and the Department of Food Science and Technology at the University of California, Davis. She is the Chair of the Graduate Group in Nutritional Biology, she holds the Kinsella Endowed Chair in Food, Nutrition, and Health, and she was named a Chancellor’s Fellow in 2015. Her lab focuses on the nexus between food, the microbiome, and health, particularly as it relates to infant health.
Dr Zoya Gridneva, The University of Western Australia Early Career Fellow (Human Milk Research), inVIVO Zoya is a Research Associate at the Human Lactation Research Group. Her research interests are interactions of human milk composition, infant appetite control and body composition of lactating mothers and their breastfed infants. She combines established body composition measurement techniques that are used mainly for adults (ultrasound and bioelectrical impedance spectroscopy) to improve the understanding of the effect of human milk composition on the breastfed infant’s body composition, growth and appetite control in order to reduce both childhood and adult obesity rates.
Suzanne Johnson, community health dietitian Early Career Fellow (Restoration of Indigenous food systems), inVIVO. Suzanne is working in First Nation communities currently pursuing a master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies. Her work is motivated by the desire to see Indigenous people live self-determining lives and enhance their social determinants of health such as food security and food sovereignty. Her main research focus is to understand how Indigenous foods and the restoration of Indigenous food systems impacts the wellbeing of Indigenous people. Indigenous collective wellbeing is dependent on the health of Indigenous food systems which is dependent on the health of the land and water.
Carsten Eriksen, Technical University of Denmark. Early Career Fellow (Mucosal Immunity and Inflammation), inVIVO. Carsten Eriksen is doing his PhD at the Department of Biotechnology and Biomedicine at the Technical University of Denmark. His interests are in inflammatory responses and mucosal immunity, particularly the influence of host-microbiota interactions during homeostatic and disease conditions.
Dr Kristina Rueter, University of Western Australia Co-Chair, Early Career Research Group, Early Career Fellow (Allergy and Immunology) inVIVO. Kristina Rüter is a consultant Paediatric Immunologist and General Paediatrician who holds the European and Australian specialist qualification with over 20 years of clinical experience. She joined the Child Allergy and Immunology Research Group (CAIR) at UWA in 2011. Her current research activities include focusing on nutritional and environmental interventions for the prevention of allergic disease.
Prof Susanne Krauss-Etschmann, Research Center Borstel and University of Kiel. Senior Fellow (Asthma, airways and microbiome), inVIVO Susanne Krauss-Etschmann is Professor of Experimental Asthma Research. Her research interests are focused on asthma as a major cause of morbidity in the Western world, currently without curative therapies. Her work aims to understand how early life environmental exposures modify lung development development and the risk of developing asthma throughout life. Her group uses animal models of prenatal exposure to tobacco/nicotine products and human samples. A second aspect of her work is understanding the steady-state balance of resident and non-resident bacterial communities in human health, including the factors driving the composition of such microbial communities. She is currently investigating the influence of smoke on the structure and functionality of the lung microbiome and its interaction with the lung health.
Catherine Lai. University of Sydney. Early Career Fellow, inVIVO. Catherine is undertaking her PhD at The University of Sydney with Professor Dianne Campbell. Her project is examining at the effects of early egg introduction in infant diet on the development of egg allergy. Her research interests are in immune regulatory pathways in food allergies.
Niels van Best, Maastricht University.
Early Career Fellow (Microbiome), inVIVO.
Niels van Best is a master’s level biomedical scientist performing a PhD at Department of Medical Microbiology at Maastricht University Medical Center (Netherlands) and RWTH Uniklinik Aachen (Germany). His main research interests include factors influencing the postnatal developing gut microbiome regarding health and disease with a special focus on the dietary aspects.
Prof.Dr. Chris Evelo, Maastricht University. Senior Fellow (Systems Biology) inVIVO
Chris Evelo is Head of the department of Bioinformatics - BiGCaT and is a PI in the Maastricht Center for Systems Biology (MaCSBio). His current research focuses on bioinformatics for integrative systems biology; aiming at a better interpretation of experimental data through integration in data models that build on structuring existing knowledge. Integrative approaches are multi-faceted, and Chris is involved in many projects related to capturing and processing experimental data. This includes the interoperability approaches underlying such efforts: standards, ontologies, mapping tools and documentation of the origin of the data and methods used (the provenance). Follow on Twitter
Dr. Palmiro Poltronieri Editor-in-Chief. Challenges – the official journal of inVIVO. Palmiro Poltronieri is a researcher at Consiglio Nazionale Delle Ricerche (CNR) in Rome, Italy. His core interests are in plant biology, food microbiology, and microbiology analysis methods high throughput analyses, biotechnologies for the quality and safety of food productions. He has interests in the plant responses to abiotic stresses. He is founder of a local start up, Biotecgen, Lecce. He has a PhD in Cellular and Molecular Biology and Pathology from the Biological Chemistry Inst., Faculty of Medicine, Verona University. His Post-doctoral studies have included work with the Japanese Society for Promotion of Science, at the Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, Tsukuba University.
Prof Harald Renz, Marburg University
Local Organiser (2015), Marburg Germany.
Senior Fellow (Immunobiology), inVIVO
Harald Renz, is director and chairman of the Institute of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiochemistry of the Philipps-University Marburg, Germany. He is past-president of the German Society of Allergology and Clinical Immunology, and coordinates the inter-regional Research Consortium of Allergies and Asthma, funded by the German Research Council. His research interest is the pathogenesis of allergies and asthma. He has made major contributions in the field of the origin of asthma, with regard to the pre- and postnatal environment, as well as to the development of animal model systems representing different phenotypes of allergies and asthma.
Dr Raffaella Bosurgi, Editor-in-Chief, Lancet Planetary Health, Senior Fellow (Planetary Health), inVIVO
Raffaella combines an MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College in London and a PhD in neuroscience from University College of London and University of Freiburg in Germany with a postdoctoral fellowship from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Rome. She previously worked for Italian energy company Enel Green Power to develop projects aimed at incentivising renewable energy projects in Italy and in developing countries. She was a Senior Editor for The Lancet Infectious Diseases and a Deputy Editor for The Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology before moving on to The Lancet Planetary Health in 2016. Her interests include climate change on human health; renewable energy and benefits for the health; environmental change and mental health; land use change and vector-borne disease; sustainable cities; freshwater scarcity and communicable diseases; natural disasters and human displacement.
Prof Solomon (Solly) Benatar, University of Cape Town. Senior Fellow (Global Health Ethics) inVIVO. Solly Benetar is Emeritus Professor of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and Distinguished Senior Scholar at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto. He is an elected Foreign Member of the US National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine (now the National Academy of Medicine) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a past-president of the International Association of Bioethics. Global Health and Global Health Ethics co-edited with Gillian Brock, a New Zealand philosopher, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2011.
Dr. Paul Forsythe McMaster University. Senior Fellow (neuro-immuno-endocrine interactions), inVIVO Paul Forsythe is Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine and Principal Investigator at the McMaster Brain-Body Institute, and Firestone Institute for Respiratory Health. He has a strong interest in neural regulation of immunity, which he pursued during his PhD at Queen’s University Belfast and Post-Doc studies at the University of Alberta. His current research explores the influence of gut microbes on the neuro-immuno-endocrine super-system, with a particular focus on mechanisms underlying the influence of specific micro-organisms, and their products, on the development and progression of pathophysiological responses including allergy, inflammation and mood disorders.
Dr. Jennifer Stellar University of Toronto. Senior Fellow (Positive Emotions and Physical Health and Wellbeing), inVIVO Jennifer Stellar is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Toronto. Her research focuses on positive emotions. Specifically she examines a class of emotions called prosocial emotions (e.g., awe, compassion, and gratitude). She explores how these emotions encourage social connection, support giving, and altruism and their important consequences for our physical health and well-being. Visit Jenny's website for more!
Dr Daniel Munblit, Imperial College London
Chair, Early Career Research (ECR) Group, Early Career Fellow (breast milk research), inVIVO. Daniel is an honorary Research Associate at Department of Paediatrics, St Mary's Campus at Imperial College London (ICL) where he completed his PhD. Dr Munblit graduated from a Moscow State Medical University in 2003 and then been trained at the Moscow Institute of Paediatrics and Child Surgery. He coordinated EU Horizon 2020 application (BIRTH project) from ICL in 2014. Dr. Munblit is one of the coordinators of the work of in-FLAME Breast Milk Research working group LactoActive and the inFLAME ECR group.
A/Prof Susanne Brix, Technical University of Denmark. inFLAME Database Coordinator
Senior Fellow, inVIVO. Susanne Brix is an associate professor at the Department of Systems Biology at Technical University of Denmark. Her interests are in the Systems Biology of Immune Regulation, particularly the influence of microbial exposures on immune development and disease risk. She coordinates the compilation of cohort metadata within the inFLAME network.
Prof. Karsten Christiansen, University of Copenhagen. Chair, Systems Biology
Senior Fellow (Microbiome and Metabolomics), inVIVO. Karsten Kristiansen, is Professor of Molecular Biology and Head, Genomics and Molecular Biomedicine, at the University of Copenhagen, He is also a Senior advisor to BGI-Shenzhen, China. He has extensive experience with studies of Gut Microbiota in Health and Disease, and is interested in integrating research frameworks for improving human and environmental health.
Prof John Penders, Maastricht University
Local Organiser (2016), Maastricht Netherlands. Senior Fellow (Microbiome and metabolomics), inVIVO. John Penders is as an assistant professor at the Department of Medical Microbiology at Maastricht University Medical Center. His research line focuses on the role of the intestinal microbiota in health and disease and as a reservoir of antimicrobial resistance. He is specifically interested in the developing microbiota in early life and aims to identify pertubations in the microbiota that contribute to the onset of diseases such as allergies and metabolic disorders
Prof Christopher A. Lowry, University of Colorado Boulder Senior Fellow (Immunobiology and Stress Physiology), inVIVO. Dr Lowry is an Associate Professor in the Department of Integrative Physiology and Center for Neuroscience at CU Boulder, with a secondary appointment in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. He is a PI in the Department of Veterans Affairs Eastern Colorado Health Care System, VA Rocky Mountain Mental Illness Research, Education, & Clinical Center, and director of the Behavioral Neuroendocrinology Laboratory. He is Co-Director, with Dr. Lisa Brenner, of the Military and Veteran Microbiome Consortium for Research and Education. Dr. Lowry’s research program focuses on understanding stress-related physiology and behavior with an emphasis on the role of the microbiome-gut-brain axis in stress resilience, health and disease.
Dr. Noreen Willows, Associate Professor of Community Nutrition, University of Alberta. Senior Fellow (Community Nutrition and Nutritional Anthropology), inVIVO. Noreen Willows received her PhD in Human Nutrition from McGill University and her BSc in Anthropology and MA in Archaeology from the University of Calgary. She has conducted research in immigrant nutrition, global nutrition and vitamin D nutrition. Her research focus is population health intervention research to enhance food access in First Nations communities through food security and food sovereignty initiatives. Dr. Willows takes a community-based participatory approach to research in which community members and researchers work together to find culturally appropriate solutions to health problems
Dr Chrysanthi Skevaki, MD, PhD, Philipps University Marburg Local Organiser (2015), Marburg Germany Co-Chair, Early Career Research Group, Early Career Fellow, inVIVO
Chrysanthi Skevaki is a physician specialized in microbiology and virology, currently heading the Allergy and Immunology labs at the Institute of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiochemistry, Philipps University Marburg, Germany. Her research interests include the role of upper viral respiratory tract infections in early life and the subsequent predisposition to asthma and atopy. She is untertaking allergy diagnostics & biomarker discovery studies for a large number of multicenter epidemiological studies at the national and European level. Her research group is supported by the German Research Council (DFG), the German Lung Center (DZL), the Rhön Klinikum, and industry. She has received numerous awards including an ESPID Fellowship, a long term ERS Research Fellowship, the ESCMID Excellence Training Award, the research prize of the Hellenic Society of Microbiology and the research prize of the Hellenic Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.
Kyra Jones, Early Career Researcher, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit.
Assistant to Local Organisers (2017), Early Career Fellow, inVIVO.
Prof Naoki Shimojo, Chiba University
Senior Fellow (Immune regulation), inVIVO
Naoki Shimojo is Chairman of Department of Pediatrics, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University - one of the leading medical centers for child health and development in Japan. The service provides high-quality health care for all kinds of severe, emergent or chronic diseases in childhood. They collaborate with families, other healthcare professionals and satellite hospitals to cure and care for sick children. His group is dedicated to promoting basic and/or clinical research as our mission as an academic medical centre - with a specific interest in allergic diseases and immune disorders.
Prof Ralph Nanan, University of Sydney Senior Fellow (Immuneregulation), inVIVO. Professor Nanan’s main areas of interest are the developmental origins of health and disease with a specific focus on paediatric clinical immunology, allergy and perinatology. His group was the first to provide evidence that preeclampsia, the most common and serious pregnancy related disorder, is likely to be the result of an imbalance between T-regulatory and TH17 cells, which consequently leads to rejection of the fetus by the maternal immune system. He is currently investigating factors responsible for fetal immune programming including maternal diet, gestational diabetes, obesity and environmental determinants.
Jake M Robinson, University of Sheffield. Early Career Fellow (Urban Nature), inVIVO Jake is an interdisciplinary doctoral researcher in the Landscape Department at the University of Sheffield. He previously worked as a consultant ecologist for seven years prior to moving into full-time research. Jake is a member of the Improving Wellbeing through Urban Nature (IWUN) network and his primary research looks at the relationship between natural environments and public health. Jake is particularly interested in the environment-microbiome-health axis, and the co-benefits of ‘green prescriptions’ aka nature-based interventions.
Prof. Johan Garssen, Utrecht University Senior Fellow (Immunomodulation and Early Life Nutrition), inVIVO
Johan Garssen is Professor Immunopharmacology at Utrecht University and Head Division of Pharmacology at Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences.
He studied medicine and biology at the Free University, Amsterdam, and specialised in immunology, pharmacology and biochemistry. He was appointed director of the immunology platform of Nutricia Research in 2008. His research interests include both preclinical as well as clinical research, in the field of immunomodulation induced by nutritional ingredients, drugs and environmental agents.
Dr Carina Venter, University of Southampton and Cincinnati Center for Eosinophilic Disorders
Senior Fellow (Early Life Nutrition), inVIVO
Carina Venter PhD, RD, is an Allergy Specialist dietitian, working with children and adults diagnosed with food allergies. Carina graduated as a dietitian in South Africa in 1993. In 1997 she moved to the United Kingdom and worked at the Good Hope Hospital in Sutton Coldfield before moving to the Isle of Wight. She has a particular interest in the role of nutrition in the prevention, diagnosis and management of allergic diseases. In recognition of her major contributions to the field she was awarded a Fellowship from the British Dietetic Association (2016) and received and honorable mention of the Pharf award, European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, June 2016
Prof Merete Eggesbø of Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Oslo Senior Fellow (Environmental health and human milk), inVIVO. Merete Eggesbo is a senior researcher, is an epidemiologist with main interests in persistent environmental toxicants and child health. She is the founder and principal investigator of the Norwegian Human Milk Study (HUMIS), which aims at assessing the effect of exposure to persistent environmental toxicants on child health. At NFI, she works closely with The National Institute of Environmental Sciences (NIEHS, North Carolina, US) involving research on the environmental samples in MoBA (Norwegian mother child cohort of 100 000 children). Furthermore, she is responsible for Norway’s contribution to the WHO monitoring program of environmental pollutants in milk.
Natalie Baughman, Curtin University, Perth
Senior Fellow (Social Emotional Learning), inVIVO Natalie is coordinator and trainer of the Aussie Optimism Program at Curtin University. Aussie Optimism is an evidence-based mental health promotion program for school that targets anxiety and depression in children and adolescents. The program takes a social-emotional learning approach, utilising psychological and educational strategies to prevent mental health problems. Natalie is involved in the ongoing research into the effectiveness of the Aussie Optimism program, and is exploring new interdisciplinary approaches to the prevention of mental health problems in childhood. She is interested in investigating the interactions between mind, body and brain, and how identified factors might operate to produce mental health outcomes.
Prof Ruby Pawankar, Nippon Medical School in Tokyo, Japan Senior Fellow (Allergy and Cell Biology), inVIVO. Ruby Pawankar has been President of the World Allergy Organisation (WAO), 2012 and 2013. Currently she is Professor of Allergy, Department of Pediatrics at Nippon Medical School in Tokyo, Japan. She is a Council member of Collegium Internationale Allergolicum and President- Elect APAAAC. Her research has focused on the cellular and molecular mechanisms of allergy, impact of environmental pollutants, and novel therapies for allergies. Among her key contributions is the role of gamma delta T cells in allergy and that of mast cells with increased Fce receptor expression as a major source of obligatory pro-allergic Th2 cytokines driving local allergen-specific IgE synthesis. She has worked on the role of environmental factors including particulate matter and mite allergens on respiratory allergies and the role of epithelial cells in regulating immune inflammation in allergic airway disease. Her current interest is on the microbiome and biomarkers in allergy.
Prof Bianca Schaub, LMU Munich, University Children´s Hospital, Munich
Senior Fellow (Immunobiology), inVIVO
Bianca Schaub is head of the Allergy-Immunology research group and Deputy Head of the Asthma and Allergy Department and Attending at the Pulmonary Department of Munich University Children´s Hospital, Munich, Germany. The main research interest of her group is to identify immunological mechanisms in the development of allergic diseases in childhood. Ongoing projects in several national and international birth cohort studies include the influences of regulatory immune responses of the infant immune system in the development of allergic diseases in childhood. Dr. Schaub has a strong interest in the effect of early maternal and environmental factors on the development of the fetal and infant immune system and subsequently the allergic phenotype. Prof. Dr. Schaub has received several prestigious Research Awards (Klosterfrau Research Award 2009, Pediatric Respiratory Research Award from ERS 2010, Johannes Wenner Award of GPP 2013, Henning Lowenstein Research Award 2013 of WAO, the Research Award 2013 from GPA, and the DGAKI Research Award 2016, German Assoc. of Allergy and Immunology).
Dr Suzanne Mavoa, The University of Melbourne Senior Fellow (Health Geography), inVIVO. Suzanne is a Senior Research Fellow in the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health. She is researching the relationship between urban nature and health, with a particular interest in the environment-microbiome-health. As part of her research she develops and applies new and improved spatial methods and technologies (Geographic Information Systems, GPS).
Cecilia Sierra-Heredia Simon Fraser University
Early Career Fellow (Climate Change), inVIVO. Cecilia is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. She completed a M.A. in Measurement, Evaluation and Research Methodology at UBC and a B.Psych (Honors) at the National University in Mexico (UNAM). Her current research projects explore the potential links between climate change, aero-allergens and the development of asthma and allergies in early-life. Her research interests encompass environmental health, respiratory illnesses, health psychology, and the use of quantitative and qualitative methodologies.
Alexandra Sitarik, Henry Ford Health System
Early Career Fellow (Biostatistics), inVIVO
Alexandra Sitarik is a biostatistician at Henry Ford Health System in the department of Public Health Sciences. She primarily works on several longitudinal birth cohorts established at Henry Ford, which were created to investigate the etiology of allergic disorders and asthma. She is particularly interested in the role that early life exposures and the early life gut microbiome play in disease development, and specializes in advanced statistical methods suitable for these complex datasets.
Prof Valérie Verhasselt, University of Western Australia Senior Fellow (Immune Tolerance and Breast Milk Research), inVIVO. With a background of Medical Doctor, Specialist in Internal Medicine and a PhD in Immunology, Valérie Verhasselt is leading translational and multi-disciplinary research aimed at understanding the mechanisms driving immune ontogeny and long term health. She is renowned for her pioneering works in animal model on the induction of immune tolerance through breastmilk for allergy prevention. Her contributions in this area have already fed the rationale for testing novel concepts of allergy prevention in human birth cohorts such as intervention trials assessing whether maternal allergen consumption during breastfeeding could prevent allergy. In 2017, Valerie Verhasselt has been appointed Chair in Human Lactology at the School of Molecular Sciences at the University of Western Australia (Perth). With her longstanding expertise in neonate immunology, the School excellence in biochemistry and the outstanding research on birth cohorts in Perth, she aims at developing interventions that could endow breastfeeding with the capacity to prevent allergic and metabolic disease as potently as it does for infectious disease
Dr. Laufey Hrólfsdóttir Akureyri Hospital in Iceland. Early Career Fellow (Biotechnology and Nutrition), inVIVO Laufey Hrólfsdóttir is head of the Department of Education, science, and quality, Akureyri Hospital in Iceland. She is a biotechnologist and a nutritionist. Her dissertation was done in collaboration with The Centre for Fetal Programming, at Statens Serum Institut in Copenhagen, and Landspitali University Hospital in Iceland. Her current research focuses on maternal diet and gestational weight gain, and its relation to offspring´s and mother´s long-term health, particularly with respect to cardiometabolic risk factors. She currently resides with her partner and two sons in Akureyri, Iceland.
Dries Martens, University of Leuven Early Career Fellow (Aging and Telomere Studies), inVIVO Dries Martens obtained his degree in bio-science engineering, molecular biology in 2012 at the University of Leuven, Belgium, and started his PhD at the Centre for Environmental Science at Hasselt University, Belgium in 2013. His current research interests are the identification of early-life maternal lifestyle, behavioral and environmental factors in relation with newborn telomere length. Besides he has an interest in investigating and identifying biomolecular pathways in association with particulate matter air pollution exposure. He currently works on the ongoing prospective birth cohort ENVIRONAGE (Environmental Influence on Ageing in Early Life) including more than 1500 mother-newborn pairs.
Simon Phipps, Queensland Institute of Medical Research Senior Fellow (Respiratory Immunology), inVIVO. Simon Phipps is a Group leader at QIMR Berghofer MRI. His research program employs both in vivo and in vitro model systems to elucidate the cellular and molecular processes by which gene-environment interactions predispose to severe virus-associated bronchiolitis in early life and the programming of aberrant immunologic processes that underlie the subsequent development of asthma.
Danica-Lea Larcombe, Edith Cowan University, Perth. Early Career Fellow (Nature-relatedness), inVIVO Danica-Lea Larcombe has a background in environmental health and is midway through an interdisciplinary PhD on biodiversity and human health through the Centre for Ecosystem Management at Edith Cowan University. The skin microbiota and nature relatedness (or human disconnect from nature) are the focus areas of her work, and she is looking for causal links between indoor plants, health and the skin microbiota. Her passion is nature and how we might bring greening strategies to disconnected people living or working in high-rise buildings to decrease inflammation and chronic diseases, and make a world of healthier and happier people! Follow on ResearchGate and Twitter.
Dr. Lars Bode, University of California, San Diego. Senior Fellow (Human Milk Research), inVIVO. Dr Bode is Associate Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Neonatology and the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, the Larsson-Rosenquist Chair of Collaborative Human Milk Research, and Director of the Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation Mother-Milk-Infant Center of Research Excellence (LRF MoMI CoRE). Lars’ research is dedicated to investigating human milk oligosaccharide (HMO) biosynthesis and functions with potential immediate and long-term benefits for infant health and development. As part of a network with collaborators from around the world, Lars’ lab provides investigators with purified HMO for in vitro and in vivo efficacy studies and also uses a high-throughput platform to analyze HMO composition in dozens of milk samples for smaller pilot studies or hundreds to thousands of milk samples for large national or multinational mother-infant cohort studies.
Dr Hind Sbihi, University of British Columbia Early Career Fellow (microbiome in the built environmental), inVIVO. Hind Sbihi holds Engineering degrees from Ecole Polytechnique Montreal (B.Eng) and Ecole Centrale de Paris (M.Eng), and a Master of Science and PhD in Occupational and Environmental Health from the University of British Columbia (UBC). For her doctoral work, she investigated air pollution exposure assessment methods for birth cohort studies of childhood asthma and allergies. Hind is currently involved in the Canadian Healthy Infant Longitudinal (CHILD) study. Her research is focused on integrating features of the built environment (transportation and natural spaces) with infants gut microbiome in the aetiology of childhood allergic disorders. Dr. Sbihi is a recipient of the BC Children’s Research Institute Mining for Miracles postdoctoral fellowship as well as the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research/AllerGen Trainee postdoctoral award.
Dr Monica Gagliano, Sydney Environment Institute, The University of Sydney and Centre for Evolutionary Biology, The University of Western Australia. Senior Fellow (Evolutionary Ecology), inVIVO Monica is the author of numerous scientific articles in the fields of animal and plant behavioural and evolutionary ecology and is coeditor of The Green Thread: Dialogues with the Vegetal World (Lexington, 2015) and The Language of Plants: Science, Philosophy, Literature (Minnesota University Press, 2017). Her research is radically transforming our perception of plants and more generally, Nature. She has pioneered the brand-new research field of plant bioacoustics by demonstrating for the first time that plants emit their own ‘voices’ as well as detect and respond to the sounds surrounding them. Her progressive and holistic approach to science interfaces with areas as diverse as ecology, physics, law, anthropology, philosophy, literature, music and art, and spirituality. By re-kindling a sense of awe for this beautiful place we call home, she is creating that fresh imaginative space which inspires truly innovative solutions to arise. For more information, visit www.monicagagliano.com
Dr Antti Seppo PhD, University of Rochester Senior Fellow (Food Allergy and Immune Development) inVIVO. Antti Seppo is a Research Associate Professor at the Department of Pediatrics and the Center for Food Allergy at the University of Rochester School of Medicine. He is investigating the role of early life exposures, including breast milk on the development of food allergies. He is involved in several prospective and retrospective cohort studies on allergy and immune system development and is developing methods to analyze the role of breast milk immunologically active components such as HMO, IgA and microbiome. He is trained in glycobiology and has a background in diagnostic industry methods development.
Dr Ganesa R Wegienka, Henry Ford Health System Chair, Planetary Health
Local Organiser (2017, 2019), Senior Fellow, inVIVO Ganesa Wegienka’s research interests include causes of pediatric allergic diseases such as allergy and asthma, as well as the racial disparities observed in their occurrence. To this end, she has received funding from the NIH to investigate the role of vitamin D in racial disparities in pediatric allergic diseases in the WHEALS cohort. Dr. Wegienka also serves as a research advisor to the fellows in training in the Division of Allergy and Immunology.
Dr. Nicole Redvers, Arctic Indigenous Wellness Foundation Senior Fellow (Indigenous and Community Health), inVIVO. Nicole Redvers is the only Dene naturopathic physician in North America. She is a member of the Deninu K’ue First Nation in northern Canada, where she was raised. Dr. Redvers has traveled the world studying various indigenous medicine systems in addition to functional science-based approaches to health and disease. This blend of modern and ancient knowledge allows her to reach a global audience with purpose. She currently resides with her husband and two daughters in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.
Dr Alan C. Logan, New York
Chair, Natural Environments
Local Organiser (2017), New York USA. Senior Fellow, inVIVO
Alan Logan is an independent researcher, biophilosopher, and Fellow of the Royal Society of Public Health. For almost 20 years Alan has authored academic articles with university-based physicians and scientists. From 2005-2015, Alan was an invited faculty member within the mind-body medicine courses offered at Harvard’s School of Continuing Medical Education. He contributed to Harvard School of Public Health’s recent Natural Environments Initiative position statement, and is a co author within the upcoming Oxford Textbook of Nature and Public Health (Oxford University Press 2018). He is committed to the scientific exploration of biopsychosocial and ecological influences in health.
Dr Glenn Albrecht, Honorary Fellow in the School of Geosciences, The University of Sydney. Senior Fellow (Environmental Philosophy), inVIVO. Glenn Albrecht retired as professor of sustainability at Murdoch University in Perth in 2014. He is an environmental philosopher with both theoretical and applied interests in the relationship between ecosystem and human health, broadly defined. He has pioneered the research domain of 'psychoterratic' or earth related mental health and emotional conditions with his concept of 'solastalgia' or the lived experience of negative environmental change. His current major transdisciplinary research interest, the positive and negative psychological, emotional and cultural relationships people have to place and its transformation is one that sees him having a national and international research profile in an emergent field of academic inquiry where he has been recognised as a global pioneer. New concepts such as his idea of ‘The Symbiocene’ are also attracting international interest.
Colin Capaldi, Carleton University
Early Career Fellow (Nature Relatedness), inVIVO. Colin Capaldi is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Psychology at Carleton University (Master of Arts in Psychology). He works in Dr. John Zelenski's Carleton University Happiness Laboratory. His primary line of research investigates the correlates, consequences, and causes of human-nature interactions and relationships, such as the link between nature relatedness and well-being, the impact of exposure to natural environments on cooperation, and how social contexts influence people’s motivation to spend time in nature.
Prof Colin D Butler, Senior Fellow (Planetary Health and Social Justice) inVIVO. Colin Butler is an Australian epidemiologist who has worked on issues related to climate change, limits to growth and conflict for three decades. Formerly an Australian Research Council Future Fellow, he is to date the only health contributor to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to have been arrested for civil disobedience to try to slow the rate of global warming. He co-founded the NGO Benevolent Organisation for Development, Health and Insight (BODHI) in 1989. He is founding co-chair of Health-Earth. He has contributed to numerous international assessments, journals, books, reports and projects, mostly on topics at the intersection of global environmental change and health.
Dr. Ashlee Cunsolo, Director of the Labrador Institute, Memorial University
Senior Fellow (Environmental Advocacy), inVIVO Ashlee Cunsolo is a passionate researcher, film maker and environmental advocate, working with research and policy to make a difference in how we live with and in this world. As a community-engaged social science and health researcher working at the intersection of place, culture, health, and environment, she has a particular interest in the social, environmental, and cultural determinants of health. For the past decade, she has worked with Inuit communities and leaders across the country to understand the ways in which climate change impacts health and wellbeing, including mental health and ecological grief and anxiety. She is a member of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, Artists, and Scientists, and a founding member of Nature Canada’s 75 Women for Nature. Follow on Twitter
Prof Tobias Kollman, University British Columbia Senior Fellow (Systems Biology), inVIVO. Dr. Kollmann completed his MD and PhD at the Albert of Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx NY, followed by a residency in pediatrics and fellowship in infectious diseases as the University of Washington, Seattle, WA, where he also conducted a post-doctoral fellowship under Dr. Chris Wilson. He currently is division head of the pediatric infectious disease at BC Children’s Hospital, UBC, in Vancouver, Canada. His expertise centers around newborn infectious diseases, immune ontogeny and early life vaccine responses employing cutting edge technology (systems biology) to extract the most information out of the typically small biological samples obtainable in early life.
Prof Julian Crane University of Otago Senior Fellow (Beneficial Microbes and Living Conditions in Health Promotion), inVIVO. Julian Crane is a research professor and Director of the Wellington Asthma Research Group based in the Department of Medicine at the University of Otago, Wellington. Current research interests are in the use of probiotics in allergic disease, diabetes and mental health; impact of poor housing on respiratory health and a research interest in alternative nicotine delivery for smoking cessation.
Dr. Jean-Claude Moubarac, Université de Montréal Senior Fellow (Nutrition) inVIVO
Jean-Claude Moubarac is Assistant Professor at the Department of Nutrition, Université de Montréal. He works to raise public awareness and inform the development of public health interventions and policies for healthy eating and reduce the burden of NCDs. He is interested in food systems, the role of cooking and the impact of food processing on nutrition, health and society, public policies for healthy eating. He collaborated on the development of the 2014 Brazilian Food Guide and wrote a report on the purchase of ultra-processed foods and obesity in the Americas for the Pan American Health Organization in 2015. He has studied anthropology and has a doctorate in public health (Université de Montréal), with postdoctoral studies in nutrition (University of São Paulo). He works with international organizations including WHO and FAO.
Professor Philip Calder, University of Southampton. Senior Fellow (Nutritional Immunology), inVIVO. Philip Calder is Professor of Nutritional Immunology within Medicine at the University of Southampton He has broad research interests in nutritional modulation of immunity, inflammation and cardiometabolic disease risk. Much of his work has been devoted to exploring the metabolism and functionality of fatty acids with an emphasis on the roles of omega-3 fatty acids. He is Chair of the Scientific Committee of the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) and President of the Nutrition Society. He is a member of the several other Editorial Boards of journals in the nutrition, clinical science and lipidology fields. With over 500 scientific publications, he is listed by Thomson Reuters as a Highly Cited Researcher. “ My work aims to understand how nutrition affects the functioning of the human body. Better understanding is key to developing strategies to improve human health and well-being, to lower disease risk and to treat nutrition-related illnesses”
Dr. Tim Takaro Professor and Associate Dean Research, Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. Senior Fellow (Climate Change, Environmental and Human Health), inVIVO Dr. Takaro is a physician-scientist trained in occupational and environmental medicine, public health and toxicology, at Yale, the University of North Carolina and University of Washington. Dr. Takaro’s research is primarily about the links between human exposures and disease, and determining effective public health based preventive solutions to such risks. He helps direct the exposure assessment component of CHILD birth cohort. His current research on human health and climate change focuses on water quality, extreme weather events and gastro-intestinal illness and the role of aero-allergens in the development of asthma in children.
Dr. Alvaro Osornio-Vargas, University of Alberta Senior Fellow (Air Pollution), inVIVO. Alvaro Osornio-Vargas research interest is in air pollution and related health effects, from the perspective of the exposure to chemical mixtures. Specifically, he has focused on the effects of particulate matter at the experimental level. Currently, he is working on a project mapping the distribution of children's disease and environmental variables in Alberta. He was trained and worked in Mexico City until August 2009, when he joined the Department of Paediatrics, University of Alberta to develop the research segment of a Children's Environmental Health initiative. He is also an Adjunct Professor in the School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Rutgers School of Public Health and the School of Public Health, University of Alberta.
Dr Hani Harb, Harvard Medical School
Local Organiser (2015), Early Career Research Fellow (Epigenetics), inVIVO
Hani completed his PhD with Dr Harald Renz's group in Marburg Germany and has taken a leading role in a series of collaborative epigenetics studies with other inFLAME researchers in both humans and animal models. He also assisted in organising the very popular inFLAME annual 2015 conference in Marburg. He is now at Harvard Medical School in the Division of Immunology at the The Boston Children's Hospital.
Jamie Snook, University of Guelph. Indigenous co-management of wildlife, plants, and fisheries Labrador Inuit Settlement Area. Jamie Snook was born in Mary’s Harbour, Labrador, within the NunatuKavut territory of the Southern Labrador Inuit. For the past 13 years, Jamie has been extensively involved in research, leadership, and public policy through his senior leadership positions and public service in Happy Valley-Goose Bay. As the long-standing Executive Director for the Torngat Wildlife, Plants and Fisheries Secretariat he has a first-hand perspective on Indigenous co-management in Canada. In 2016, Jamie started his Ph.D. in Public Health at the University of Guelph’s Department of Population Medicine within the Ontario Veterinary College, working with Dr. Sherilee Harper, Dr. James Ford, and Dr. Chris Furgal. His Ph.D. research focuses on Indigenous co-management of wildlife, plants, and fisheries in the Labrador Inuit Settlement Area and the intersection with community health and wellbeing. Follow on Twitter
Jenni Lehtimäki, Early Career Researcher, University of Helsinki. Early Career Fellow, inVIVO (Master of science in ecology and evolutionary biology)
Jenni applies her ecological knowledge to human microbiota research. She will defend her PhD in autumn 2017, titled: “The biodiversity hypothesis of allergy: The interrelations between microbiota, allergic diseases and exposure to microbes in residential environments”. Jenni is passionate about the determinants of the microbial species composition in humans. Her work addresses the factors that modify microbiota and their relative importance in shaping human health. Besides humans, Jenni has used pet dogs as a model animal for understanding the associations between living environment, microbiota and allergic diseases.
Andrew Bossick, Early Career Researcher, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit.
Assistant to Local Organisers (2017), Early Career Fellow, inVIVO.
Andrew S. Bossick, MPH is a master's level epidemiologist at Henry Ford Health System, in Detroit, Michigan. He will soon be pursuing a PhD in Public Health at the University of Washington, United States, as a T32 Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) National Research Service Award (NRSA) fellow. His research interests include racial disparities, maternal and child health, and environmental impact on perinatal and postnatal health and disease.
Prof. John Holloway, University of Southampton
Senior Fellow (Genetics), inVIVO
John Holloway is Professor of Allergy and Respiratory Genetics within Medicine at the University of Southampton. He now heads the Respiratory Genetics Group, based in the Human Development and Health and Clinical and Experimental Sciences Academic Units. The Respiratory Genetics Group undertakes a number of research projects into the genetic basis of allergy, asthma and other respiratory diseases. Research highlights include the identification of the gene ADAM33 as an asthma susceptibility gene, as published in Nature.
Dr Peter Hsu, University of Sydney
Early Career Fellow (Immuneregulation), inVIVO. Photographer in residence.
Peter Hsu is a consultant allergist and immunologist at the Westmead Children's Hospital and a Senior Lecturer in Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of Sydney. His main research interests are in the regulatory immune mechanisms in food allergies.
Prof Peter Vuillermin, Deakin University
Senior Fellow (Early Life Origins of Immune Disorders, Birth Cohorts), inVIVO. Peter Vuillermin is a general paediatrician with an interest in the early life origins of immune related disorders in the modern environment. Peter is co-lead investigator on the Barwon Infant Study, which is a population-derived Australian birth cohort study (n=1074) incorporating longitudinal assembly of uniquely detailed array of biological samples in combination with environmental and clinical data. He has a particular interest in the relationship between the modern environment and diet, the microbiome and its metabolites, and the early life origins of immune dysregulation, allergic disease and asthma.
Dr. Piush Mandhane, University of Alberta Senior Fellow (Pediatric Respiratory Medicine), inVIVO. Piush Mandhane graduated with his MD from University of Toronto and completed his PhD in Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics from McMaster University. He is currently an Associate Professor and Divisional Director of Pediatric Respiratory Medicine at the University of Alberta. He is one of the CHILD study principal investigators and the CHILD Edmonton site lead. His primary research interest is in understanding how sleep and sleep disruption in early childhood influence behavior and cognitive development. He has published 46 peer-reviewed publications and has been funded by CIHR, The AllerGen NCE, The Lung Association, and Alberta Health Services.
Prof Alan Landay, Rush University
Senior Fellow (Infection and Immunity), inVIVO. Alan Landay is the chairperson of the Department of Immunity & Emerging Pathogens and principal investigator of the Rush Immunology Specialty Laboratory (ISL), with 35 years experience in studies of HIV immunopathogenesis. He has worked with the AIDS Clinical Trials Group since its beginning and has directed the ISL since it began.
His studies on immunophenotyping and innate immunity in HIV disease have made significant contributions to this field. These early studies were carried out in a newly recognized population of hemophiliacs that were shown to develop AIDS. His work was extended to define monocyte subsets and the critical role of monocytes and innate immune cell activation in HIV pathogenesis. These papers have contributed to a shift in thinking about HIV as an adaptive immune disease to one focused on innate cell driven inflammation linked to the development of immunosenescence.
Dr Jakob Stokholm, University of Copenhagen. Early Career Fellow (Microbial Ecology and Childhood Development), inVIVO. Jakob Stokholm received his medical degree from the University of Copenhagen in 2006, and has later been employed for 1½ year at the paediatric department at Næstved Sygehus. Jakob finished his PhD-thesis: “Antibiotic Administration and Factors Influencing the Vaginal Microbiota during Pregnancy” about antibiotics and vaginal ecology during pregnancy in a Danish cohort of 743 women (COPSAC-2010) in 2012.
Now Jakob Stokholm is continuing his research as a post.doc. at COPSAC with the focus on the earliest bacterial ecology and environmental influence of children and the development of disease in childhood.
Dr. Kirsi Järvinen-Seppo Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, NY Senior Fellow (Breast Milk Research), inVIVO. Kirsi Järvinen-Seppo is the Chief and Founder’s Distinguished Chair of Pediatric Allergy and Immunology and the Director of the Center for Food Allergy at the Golisano Children’s Hospital. She completed her M.D. and Ph.D. at the University of Helsinki, and her research fellowship in the Jaffe Institute for Food Allergy at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York. Her research program is focused on identifying mechanisms that support the development of oral tolerance. Utilizing animal models and human cohorts, she is studying the role of breast milk bioactive components and early environmental farm exposures in the development of infant mucosal and systemic immune system, microbiome and atopic diseases. These studies will allow for strategies in primary prevention of allergic diseases aimed at infants and/or their mothers.
Dr Daniel P. Potaczek, Marburg University
Early Career Fellow (Epigenetics), inVIVO
Daniel P. Potaczek is a junior group leader (funded by the German Center for Lung Research – DZL) at the Institute of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiochemistry, Molecular Diagnostics, the University of Marburg. His current research focuses on the role of epigenetic mechanisms in chronic inflammatory disorders, especially allergies and asthma.
Dr Ekaterina Khaleva, Saint-Petersburg State Paediatric Medical University. Early Career Fellow (Allergy and Immunology), inVIVO Kate Khaleva is a pediatric allergist and immunologist at Saint-Petersburg State Paediatric Medical University, Russia. She has a special interest in preventive strategies of food allergy as well as pathophysiology of anaphylaxis. She was awarded a fellowship from European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, for the NHS-wide project titled “Characterizing patterns of anaphylaxis; comparison between food-induced and peri-anaesthetic reactions” under the supervision of George du Toit at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, London, United Kingdom. As a part of Dr Daniel Munblit’s team she conducts systematic reviews on associations between different cytokines and allergic outcomes in infancy and early childhood.
Jon Olsen, University of Glasgow. Early Career Fellow (Public Health Geographer), inVIVO. Jon is a postdoctoral researcher in the Neighbourhoods and Communities Programme of the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow, UK. As a Geographer, Jon’s research interests are in Epidemiology, Spatial Analysis, and the Built/Natural Environment. Currently, Jon is working on studies that used GPS to collect individual-level human mobility to describe urban mobility and environmental exposure across entire urban landscapes. Previously Jon has worked for the National Health Service (NHS) in England whilst undertaking an MSc in Public Health before completing a PhD in Epidemiology at Cardiff University, Wales.
Dr. Nils Oskar Jõgi. Early Career Fellow (Biodiversity and Allergy), inVIVO. Nils is a PhD student at the University of Bergen. He finished his MD in 2017 from the University of Tartu, Estonia. The main focus of his research is on helminth exposure and its relation to allergies. He has worked with the ECRHS III and RHINESSA study since 2013. He has also been a guest researcher at the University of Cape Town in William Horsnell’s lab.
Charlene Nielsen, University of Alberta Early Career Fellow (Health Geography), inVIVO
Charlene Nielsen is dedicated to defending the "health of the land" for all organisms on earth by developing Geographical Information Systems solutions through integrative collaborations. She is currently an interdisciplinary PhD candidate in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences & Pediatrics at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Her research brings the geographic perspective to the spatiotemporal associations of outdoor environmental exposures with adverse birth outcomes (DoMiNO project) and with infant gut microbiota (SyMBIOTA project).
Dr. Randi J. Bertelsen, University of Bergen Senior Fellow (Environmental Health in Asthma and Allergy), inVIVO Randi Bertelsen is an epidemiologist and researcher affiliated with the University of Bergen and Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen, Norway. She has her PhD and postdoctoral training from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in Oslo, Norway and from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS/NIH) in North Carolina, USA. Her focus lies within the etiology and risk factors of asthma and allergy, mainly on environmental (chemical) exposures in relation to asthma and allergy. Her current research explores the association between oral health and lung health, in particular how exposure to antibacterial chemicals may modulate oral bacterial composition and thereby influence respiratory disease.
Dr. Simon Otto, University of Alberta School of Public Health. Senior Fellow (One Health), inVIVO Dr. Otto is a veterinary epidemiologist working on One Health approaches to develop scientific and policy mechanisms to combat antimicrobial resistance. His research uses surveillance and other data, combined with quantitative epidemiological methods, to tackle research questions in the arena of the human population burden of antimicrobial resistance and integrated antimicrobial use and resistance surveillance along the farm-to-fork continuum. He works closely with Federal-Provincial-Territorial government partners to help shape policy to combat antimicrobial resistance. Dr. Otto began his appointment at the School of Public Health in 2017. Prior to this, he spent six years with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry working on animal disease surveillance and antimicrobial use policy for animals.
Dr Kristin Wickens, University of Otago, Senior Research Fellow (Epidemiology) inVIVO. Kristin Wickens is an epidemiologist primarily interested in the role of probiotics in preventing allergic disease in childhood. She has extended this interest to looking at the role of probiotics in women’s health during pregnancy, including gestational diabetes, and post pregnancy, including post-natal depression and anxiety. Investigating the relationship between early life probiotic supplementation and cognitive outcomes in the child has also been of interest.
Dr. Liene Bervoets, Maastricht University.
Early Career Fellow (Microbiome and Metabolomics), inVIVO.
Liene Bervoets is a researcher at the Department of Medical Microbiology at Maastricht University Medical Center, the Netherlands. Her core interests include the postnatal development of the microbiome and metabolome in health and disease. She obtained her PhD in Medicine and Life Sciences at Hasselt University, Belgium. During this project she studied the metabolic health of obese children and adolescents by combining clinical and NMR-based metabolomics research.